A journal article on games and gender, that has been years in the making is finally going to see the light of day! The complete reference and abstract can be found below. Drop me an email if you would like a copy.
Heeter, C., Egidio, R., Mishra, P., Winn, B., & Winn, J. (accepted). Alien Games: Do girls prefer games designed by girls? Games & Culture Journal.
Abstract: This three year study used a mixed method design beginning with content analysis of games envisioned by 5th and 8th graders, followed by a survey of students in the same age range reacting to video promos representing these games. Results show that the designers’ gender influences the design outcome of games and that girls expected they would find the girl designed games significantly more fun to play than the boy designed games while boys imagined the boy designed games would be significantly more fun to play than the girl designed games. Boys overwhelmingly picked games based entirely on fighting as their top ranked games. Girls overwhelmingly ranked those same fighting games as their least preferred. Girls as designers consciously envisioned games with both male and female players in mind, while boys designed only for other boys. Both 8th grade boy game ideas were liberally “borrowed” from a successful commercial game.